• MLS Analyst Picks: Atlanta United vs Orlando City

    Written by Rohit Ghosh
    Follow @rohitghosh on Twitter

    MLS Saturday

    There's plenty of action in the MLS Saturday, with Atlanta United and Orlando City matching up for the second time in about a week. This time the match is in Bobby Dodd Stadium in Atlanta, with the home side heavily favored on the money line (-180).

    Atlanta's the favorite, and righfully so.

    The odds in Vegas indicate the home side has about a 64 percent chance of winning. Atlanta United wins over 54 percent of simulated matchups.

    AccuScore sim data has Atlanta winning this matchup, assigning a 4-star hot trend to the Atlanta money line pick.

    Atlanta defeated Orlando 1-0 just last week and it's tough to see why anything changes this time around.

    All of AccuScore's MLS Picks

    Value Pick

    Orlando did acquire Dom Dwyer and his ability to put the ball in the back of the net goes without question. In the last three seasons, he has scored 16, 12 and 22 goals, respectively, for Kansas City. He gives Orlando more firepower, and that could indicate a better overall performance from a roster with lifted spirits.

    The draw is offering +325 odds on the money line, indicating there's only about a 23.5 percent chance of happening. There is a draw in about 21 percent of simulated matchups.

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    A Pick on the Total

    Depending on when and where you get the total, it's going to be either 2.75 or 3. Despite the 1-0 outcome last week, the lean is still on the OVER Saturday with Atlanta more often than not scoring multiple times in home matches.

    They still feature the best offense in the conference with 40 goals, 21 of those coming at home. The total goes OVER in close to 59 percent of simulations.

  • MLS Friday: Orlando City vs Real Salt Lake

    Written by Rohit Ghosh
    Follow @rohitghosh on Twitter

    MLS Analyst Preview: Orlando City vs Real Salt Lake

    Friday night features some MLS action on ESPN as an out-of-form Orlando City SC heads west against a struggling Real Salt Lake (RSL) squad.

    Losers of four of their last five matches, RSL will look to get back on track in the West standings - currently in the No. 10 slot with 17 points. The recent struggles were all on the road, though, and the home crowd should help turn things around.


    Vegas Odds vs AccuScore Simulation Data

    Vegas odds have RSL as slight home favorites to get the win, listed at -125 on the money line at the time of publication. That indicates about a 54.4 percent chance of winning.

    AccuScore data has that probability much lower, just under 43 percent. AccuScore sim data would have listed RSL at about +130 on the money line.

    Taking a look at the standings, there's some value in the UNDER and the draw in this matchup. With Orlando City having scored just two goals in their last five road matches, recent play indicates a pick on the UNDER.

    AccuScore sim data, however, doesn't provide much value on either side of the total.

    Make sure to check out the full simulation to get insight on side value picks and potential in a draw in this matchup.

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    Analyst's Last Word

    Despite the difference in the money line winning probabilities between odds and sim data, a pick on the home side is attractive. RSL isn't having a great season, but they have been solid at home - winning three in a row there. They're a shade over EVEN odds and it's fairly attractive.

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  • Toronto FC vs NE Revolution - Analyst Preview

    Written by Rohit Ghosh
    Follow @rohitghosh on Twitter

    MLS Friday: Toronto FC vs New England Revolution

    With less than two days of rest between games, Toronto FC heads into Friday's match with New England Revolution at BMO Field following a 1-1 draw with the Montreal Impact on Wednesday night.

    As Toronto FC manager Greg Vanney said following Wednesday's game, things should be more than manageable as long as the team takes it "one game at a time."

    Toronto (9-5-2) sits atop the standings as they host a 14th ranked New England (5-5-6) team.

    Toronto FC is slightly favored on the money line, listed at about -145 at the time of publication. New England is getting anywhere from +365 to +425 on the money line, depending on when and where you see the line, with the draw hovering around +300.

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    Vegas Odds, AccuScore Simulations, Analyst Picks

    We're usually interested when Vegas odds and AccuScore sim data are on different sides of a favorite. This isn't one of those situations, but rather one where AccuScore sims agree with and solidify a pick on the home favorite.

    The money line pick on Toronto is a four-star (out of four) AccuScore hot trend. The value, however, seems to be on the total, with sim data suggesting a pick on the OVER.

    Both sides have proven this season they can score, with about 56 percent of Toronto FC matches going over 2.5, and 69 percent of New England matches going over 2.5.

    The OVER is a three-star (out of four) AccuScore hot trend.

    What to Watch For

    Must Win Situation - Watch for New England to play with a sense of desperation - especially in the first half. They need a win if they want to keep their postseason hopes alive. Given the disparity in talent between these two sides, that hope should fairly quickly fade. Toronto, on the other hand, is firing on all cylinders this season following their loss in the finals last year. It's an inter-conference matchup, so expect fans to not only match the players' intensity, but also potentially exceed it.

    Getting Revenge - Toronto had just one of its two losses earlier in June on the road vs New England, falling 0-3 to a team they're much better than. Defender Eriq Zavaleta did mention this week that he and his teammates remember New England showing a "lack of class" in the final stages of that last matchup. “Because of that, it gave us an extra little chip that, in my opinion, you don’t want to give a team like us.”

    The Return - He won't start, but keep an eye on Toronto FC forward Tosaint Ricketts to return from his hamstring injury sometime Friday evening. He's expected to play some minutes, and should offer his squad an added weapon as they prepare to make another push for the title. The 29-year-old Canadian native -- in 12 appearances this season -- has three goals, including two game-winners.

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